....one in a million?


Information and questions on GL1100 Goldwings (1980-1983)
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f1xrupr
Posts: 396
Joined: Mon Jan 13, 2014 6:13 am
Location: Triplet Va
Motorcycle: 1980 gl 1100 Std. Vetter

....one in a million?

Postby f1xrupr » Sat Mar 21, 2015 7:57 pm



Over the years I've owned a few bikes-maybe 25 runners-only bought 1 new one-it was a 1980 gs 550 t....$1600.00, nice bike-bought it in 1983 with 2 miles on it...
I think the smoothest bike I ever owned was a 1978? Suzuki 250-2 stroke-2 cylinder, with a ram air system (I don't know what model), street bike. For years I've liked goldwings, but got out of bikes for about 20 years (was into boats), and bought myself a project one for my 50th birthday. Took right at a year to get it patched up-it was rough (of course I still tinker with it). I didn't do any reading on them prior to buying one-I just think Honda makes the best engines overall, and you don't need to study to hear about their endurance. I like it a lot, but it's not what I expected. It's kinda clunky, kinda clumsy, kinda rattles and growls, wide handle bars, kinda bumpy,... I tell people it kinda reminds me of a tractor-hey, it's strong enough....Is mine just one in a million?


My exercise bike is a goldwing.

User avatar
HawkeyeGL1200
Posts: 918
Joined: Sat Jul 05, 2014 11:53 am
Location: Courtland, Va.
Motorcycle: 1984 GL1200 Interstate
1981 GL1100 Interstate

Re: ....one in a million?

Postby HawkeyeGL1200 » Sun Mar 22, 2015 6:43 am

I recon your describing your GL1100 and that bumpy, growly, rattly sort of way it gets you down the road.. Mine kind of is the same. I suppose it falls into that beauty is in the eye of the beholder kind of way of describing the bike... but I'd say mine is as you describe yours. When I bought the GL1200, I felt like I was riding a "Lazy Boy" down the highway. Then I got the 1100, and it reminded me of the way "older" motorcycles used to ride... growly, rattly, bumpy ... but tight where it matters, in the riding.

I've felt that my 1100 is far better suited to how I ride around town, in the country on those secondary roads and that the 1200 is a superior "Slab" bike in every regard.

When you consider the historical perspective of when the bikes were built and what they were built for, they're pretty awesome. Some of the growling, rattling and bumpiness can be worked out of these old gals. The growling and rattling is probably minor (or major) carb balancing.. the clunking (I assume transmission here) took mine several oil changes to improve on, however I'll never call the way they shift as smooth. Of course the bumpy ride can be tamed with progressive springs in the front and rear.

I've been considering a test ride of a newer (GL1500) model Goldwing. It may be time I owned a bike made after 1984 or 1985, which is the newest year model I've ever owned. I've got one foot stuck in my glory days, and I can't seem to get it pulled loose no matter how hard I try. I love bikes built in the 70's and 80's ... it may be a character defect, but when I find myself looking at "For Sale" ads I don't even look at new bikes. The style (or lack there of) of the newer machines lack imagination (to me) and the lines aren't anymore interesting than the shape of the plastic panels screwed into the frame.

Three or so years ago, I went into the show room of two motorcycle (Major brands) dealers near Fort Lee, Va. One sells "imports" and the guys next door sell Harley Davidson MCs... I didn't ask to sit on any Harleys... I did ask to sit on most of the import models. In all the bikes on the showroom floor, I found TWO (2) I thought I could stand to ride further than the local gas station. The foot position was so far forward on most of them, that I wondered how someone shorter than me could even manage to shift the bike. It seemed every make and model was trying to look like a 60's "Easy Rider" chopper... and in every case they failed miserably, to me at least... I have to give Harley Davidson a lot of credit for making motorcycles that (at least they look like) can be ridden farther than the corner and back without a back brace on... I didn't want to give the sales staff a false impression that I was buying, so I didn't do any touching that day..

The bottom line for me is, I know I'm riding technology that was designed and built in the early 1980's and I have come to expect a certain level of audible and physical discomfort based on the era in which the bike was built. I find comfort in the fact that my Old-Wings rattle, grow, bounce, and perhaps are a little less polished than some, even from the same vintage. I doubt I'll ever sell either of them. I am in need of a better way to keep them out of the elements, but for now I'll keep riding and looking for the perfect motorcycle... you know, the kind that shifts like velvet, pulls off the line without hesitation or growling at me, and doesn't rattle and bounce me some... and I'll ride it until I miss all the character my old Goldwings provide... it's kind of like we're having a conversation, those old Goldwings and me... they do most of the talking and work. I do most of the listening, and get all the enjoyment from riding.
I am wrong as often as I am right concerning what is wrong with someone else' motorcycle without having seen the machine in person. Guessing with limited information, as to the source of the trouble, is sketchy at best.

f1xrupr
Posts: 396
Joined: Mon Jan 13, 2014 6:13 am
Location: Triplet Va
Motorcycle: 1980 gl 1100 Std. Vetter

Re: ....one in a million?

Postby f1xrupr » Sun Mar 22, 2015 6:59 am

Hey, that was vary nice to read...you ever consider being a columnist (or maybe you are)?....yes, it's a 1100-maybe I should edit...
My exercise bike is a goldwing.

User avatar
HawkeyeGL1200
Posts: 918
Joined: Sat Jul 05, 2014 11:53 am
Location: Courtland, Va.
Motorcycle: 1984 GL1200 Interstate
1981 GL1100 Interstate

Re: ....one in a million?

Postby HawkeyeGL1200 » Sun Mar 22, 2015 7:12 am

No columnist, just full of it LOL...

f1xrupr wrote:Hey, that was vary nice to read...you ever consider being a columnist (or maybe you are)?....yes, it's a 1100-maybe I should edit...
I am wrong as often as I am right concerning what is wrong with someone else' motorcycle without having seen the machine in person. Guessing with limited information, as to the source of the trouble, is sketchy at best.

User avatar
Mspinner
Posts: 163
Joined: Thu Dec 04, 2014 6:10 pm
Location: Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Motorcycle: 1983 GL1100 Apencade

Re: ....one in a million?

Postby Mspinner » Sun Mar 22, 2015 12:15 pm

Man....Hawk...very nice. The old bikes, it's in your blood!! Very well said. :D

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urbanmadness
Posts: 214
Joined: Sat Feb 15, 2014 3:31 pm
Location: Sacramento, California
Motorcycle: 1982 Gl1100A Aspencade *sold
1989 GL1500 Aspencade

Re: ....one in a million?

Postby urbanmadness » Tue Mar 24, 2015 4:06 pm

I don't know, I love my 1100. It has more soul then the later bikes. Sounds like a little british sportscar when you have it in the twisties... She's not as forgiving as her younger sisters, but it is more rewarding when you ride her well.

putting up with her quirks, makes her fun... Just like my wife...:D




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